Here is a sneak into our authors conversation series, Birud Ghosalkar’s The Boy With A Paint Brush is a sweet emphatic journey of a little boy into the world of creativity. Here, Birud tells her own journey into the first of children literature and what inspired her to write this book.
Book: The Boy with a Paintbrush
Release Date: 22 April 2022
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Elevator pitch for the book: One starry night when stars were bright Neel had a Dream! Join little Neel in his dreams and discover in this heartfelt story about Neel’s doubt and how his parents help him overcome it through art.
- We can clearly see the love and warmth flowing out of each and every page of this beautifully illustrated book? Could you tell us what’s the inspiration behind the story?
The inspiration is my 5-year-old son who as a kid keeps talking about his dreams. When I heard his stories, I thought of writing this book (A boy with a Paintbrush) and sharing with the audience the possibility of achieving higher sense of joy through painting/art.
- Does being a mother interest you in writing children’s literature?
Yes, that is one of the reasons for me to write in this area. I have read lot of books for my son from different authors having diverse backgrounds such as Julia Donaldson, Chetan Vohra, Eric Carle, Oliver Jeffers, Sudha Murthy, Ruskin Bond. One common thing which I have observed is that the authors want to share their feelings and creativity with the audiences. I share similar aspirations and hence want to share my work with others.
- What’s your writing process? Every writer follows a certain routine, discipline, some sit over the manuscript for a while and let it cool off so if they may come up with more insight.
I first conceptualize the idea of the story; in this case it was the child struggling to express the feelings/emotions and eventually parents helping the child. I do not have a set pattern to write and finalize the manuscript. As & when ideas comes to me I continue writing the story. During the writing process I keep sharing my work with my friends and family member for their feedback which helps me understand readers point of view.
- The story subtly moves towards parents helping their child believe in his dreams. Which I must concur is one of the best moments of the story where we can all see such a forthright example of parenting. What’s your perspective on parenting in this age and times?
My perspective is to not just being a ‘parent’ but be a guide for the child. Let the child explore things on their own, allow them to succeed and more importantly fail and then learn. Now a days parents keeps saying that kids are always around gadgets but the time in which we are living currently is driven by technology so let them enjoy that and use it for their benefits. It is easier said than done, I struggle myself to keep up with these principles on a regular basis, but I keep trying.
- Writing a story whether for adults or children is a deep intuitive process, it’s almost like pupating. Would you like to share your journey with us?
I couldn’t agree more. It is a journey where you transform an idea into a living story which people can feel and experience. This was my first experience of publishing a book and I had to figure out everything right from finding illustrator up to publishing house. It was challenging but at the same time very experiential. I learned a lot through the process. I was clear with the illustrator (Tasneem) with whom I wanted to work so that was the first phase. We did some iterations on the content and illustrations based on feedback received and finally worked with the publishers to complete the process.
- The book has such vibrant illustrations. Did you give some input into the illustration process?
Yes, I was actively working with Tasneem who has done a great job with illustrations. I remember we did 2-3 iterations on illustrations based on the flow of story and looking at the final product.
- Lastly, would you like to share your views on writing and give a message to young readers and writers.
I like to write because I want to share my ideas, perspective and experiences with the readers with a hope that they enjoy my work. It gives me greater feelings of happiness. My message to young readers is to continue the reading journey because that helps to gather different perspectives, acknowledge differences and have an open mind. Try and connect with the author and share your feedback which will help the writer to improvise. For young writers, I would say that writing is one of the most creative and challenging work around us. Your writing can inspire, entertain and educate the readers. There would be some days when you feel not to write, it’s completely fine to do so. You should use such time for other activities which will rejuvenate you like music, travelling, reading books. So, continue on your journey.